On the go: the best passes in Austria

Table of contents

On the go: the best passes in Austria
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On the go: the best passes in Austria

On the go: the best passes in Austria

On the go: the best passes in Austria

On the go: the best passes in Austria

25th pictures

On the go: the best passes in Austria
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Place 9: Nassfeld Pass – The landscape and route of the Passo di Pramollo are attractive, but the poor asphalt often draws your gaze downwards.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Grobglockner.

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Place 10: Zillertaler Hohenstrabe – A case for cruisers: The Hohenstrabe offers fantastic views of the Zillertal and the surrounding mountains.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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Our Austria loop offers a total of 19 passes. The tour through the Alpine republic is most attractive when it is driven clockwise.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Plockenpass.

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Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Staller Sattel.

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7th place: Plockenpass – The Plockenpass is particularly spectacular on the steep Italian side.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
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When you have reached the bottom after the descent, it is worth spending the night on Lake Antholz.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
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8th place: Silvretta – The landscape of the Silvretta-Strabe is a hit, but a rigid speed limit and the expensive toll tarnish the fun.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Nockalm Pass.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Silvretta-Strabe.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Hahntennjoch.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Solkpass.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
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2nd place: Timmelsjoch – At the Timmelsjoch Pass, apart from the route, it is above all the varied and picturesque landscape that captivates.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
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1st place: Nockalm – an outstanding variety of curves with the best road quality.

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4th place: Hahntennjoch – The sometimes extremely steep route has the advantage that there is hardly any traffic.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Nassfeld Pass.

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3rd place: Staller Sattel – Unique about this pass: the single-lane downhill road that switches to green every full hour for 15 minutes with a traffic light.

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6th place: Solkpass – Although the pass is quite low, it has a few other attractions. Various curves and beautiful views sweeten the ride.

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It is in St. Leonard “Sand host”, Birthplace of the still popular Tyrolean freedom fighter Andreas Hofer.

On the go: the best passes in Austria
Drawing: Hornig

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The route over the Timmelsjoch Pass.

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The route over the Zillertaler Hohenstrabe.

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5th place: Grobglockner – One of the highest pass roads with an extraordinary landscape.

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A tour through Austria’s mountain landscape impresses with its many curved routes. You can see which of the passes in Austria is best to drive on the next pictures.

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Those who stay in the area beforehand can get half of the toll back from the hotelier.

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On the go: the best passes in Austria

On the go: top alpine passes
The best passes in Austria

In MOTORRAD issue 6 we showed the ten best alpine passes in Switzerland. Here are the ten best Alpine passes in Austria.

Daniel Lengwenus

05/14/2010

Even the longest winter is coming to an end. When the snow melts, the passes open and beckon with orgy of curves, high altitude and breathtaking views. The Austrians know practically no plains and don’t call their homeland the Alpine republic for nothing. High time to tackle the most beautiful climbing tours from Carinthia to Vorarlberg. We have compiled ten alpine highlights on the following pages.

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On the go: the best passes in Austria

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The ten best alpine passes in Switzerland


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On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route through the Alpine republic – Travel time: 6 days – Distance covered: 1900 kilometers

The route
The journey leads via the A8 to Salzburg, the way back via the A96 to Memmingen. The best ten passes can be combined to form a loop that is not stingy with attractions even in the valleys and offers a further nine passes. Nassfeldpass, Plockenpass, Timmelsjoch and Staller Sattel cross the border into Italy. It is worth crossing on both sides of many mountain passes such as the Timmelsjoch, Nockalm and Staller Sattel. The Staller Sattel also offered the best hostel: The Seehaus (www.hotel-seehaus.com) near Antholz offers rooms with a view of the lake from 52 euros and a star-rated kitchen for affordable money.

The review
In order to capture the character of the passports in a compact, yet differentiated way, we have assigned points in five categories on a scale from one to ten. In addition to the general driving fun, which ranges from the variety of the route to the condition of the road, the ratings for slow and fast corners are about their number, but above all about their experience factor. Another ten points were awarded for the most beautiful area and the best view. At the top of the pass, the summit panorama and infrastructure for breaks and meals count.

Driving in Austria
The motorway vignette costs bikers 4.40 euros for ten days. Some motorways and mountain passes require additional tolls. Although financially uninviting at first glance, the Austrians are almost overwhelmed with hospitality for motorcyclists. Everywhere signs on hotels and restaurants announce: “Bikers welcome.” The speed limit on motorways is 130 km / h, on country roads at 100 and in urban areas at 50. On motorways people like to flash behind tunnels, otherwise the speed limiters were limited.

1st place: Nockalm


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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The Nockalm Pass offers an outstanding variety of curves with the best road quality.

Length: 34 kilometers • Height: 2042 meters • Opening times: beginning of May to end of October • Maximum gradient: 12 percent • Toll: 7 euros • Special features: attractive route with two pass heights.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Nockalm Pass.

The turns have sonorous names such as Barntatzn or Bluatstropfl. There are 52 of them, and seldom have tight turns been so much fun. The Nockalmstrabe meanders through the Nockberge National Park with curves of all radii and excellent road quality. For 34 kilometers between Reichenau and Innerkrems, no town disturbs the flow of traffic. The Nockalmstrabe is not an important traffic route and therefore not overcrowded. On the 2024 meter high Schiestlscharte, an inn invites you to stop off. The quieter stop is the hut on the 2042 meter high Eisentalhohe with a magnificent view of the “Nocky Mountains”. This is where the late bird catches the worm: it is officially open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Our tip: If you pass the toll booth after 5 p.m., you can get through for free.

2nd place: Timmelsjoch


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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At the Timmelsjoch Pass, in addition to the route, the varied and picturesque landscape is particularly impressive.

Length: 44 kilometers • Height: 2509 meters • Opening times: mid-June to mid-October • Maximum gradient: 15 percent • Toll: 11–13 euros • Special features: both the route and the landscape are very varied.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Timmelsjoch Pass.

At 2509 meters, the Timmelsjoch is the highest pass among our top ten and also the most varied in terms of driving. The lowest bend on the north side comes to an altitude of 2000 meters, where other passes stop. From St. Leonard in South Tyrol upwards in the direction of Moos, the slope winds wonderfully smoothly through the forest, followed by a wide variety of curves on the almost 30-kilometer ascent. In the upper part on the Italian side of the “Passo di Rombo” Steep hairpin bends wind through a rugged rocky landscape, the descent on the Austrian side is wider, but nicely flowing. The toll costs just eleven euros, 13 euros in both directions – but only from the Austrian side. Our tip: come from the south and turn around in front of the toll booth.

3rd place: Staller Sattel


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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Unique to the Staller Sattel: the single-lane downhill road that switches to green every full hour for 15 minutes with a traffic light.

Length: 52 kilometers • Height: 2052 meters • Opening times: mid-May to the end of October • Maximum gradient: 10 percent • No tolls • Special features: one-way one-way street on the Italian side, on which the direction is changed every half hour.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Staller Sattel.

Even walking through the Deferregental with its farms enthroned on the slopes like castles is a pleasure. After a wooded serpentine route, the slope leads with further drawn curves to a wild highland with jagged mountains. The only disturbing thing is the traffic light at the top of the pass. On the way down to Italy, from 6 a.m. to 10:15 p.m., it only switches to green for 15 minutes on the hour, because the descent is via a single-lane road. It’s worth the wait, though. It curves variedly over the best asphalt and without oncoming traffic downhill. The dense forest just doesn’t offer a great view. But the turquoise Antholz Lake in the valley is a great sight. Our tip: The sunset tour with an overnight stay in the Seehaus on Lake Anterselva.

4th place: Hahntennjoch


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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The sometimes extremely steep stretch on the Hahntennjoch has the advantage that there is hardly any traffic.

Length: 29 kilometers • Height: 1903 meters • Opening times: April to November • Maximum gradient: 16 percent • No tolls • Special features: Austria’s most northerly high-alpine pass.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Hahntennjoch.

The 30 km / h zone when driving through Imst demands a bit of self-control, but afterwards bikers can live out their urge to take corners. Petrified monster waves lurk at the roadside as you climb. There are mudslides from there that sometimes block the passage. A downer is the desolate top of the pass with no possibility of catering. It offers a restaurant with a beer garden on the descent at the entrance to Pafflar. The Hahntennjoch, which connects the Inn and Lechtal valleys, is an insider tip for the connection from Allgau to Tyrol and, unlike the Fernpass, is closed to caravans and heavy trucks. There are good reasons for this, because the eleven kilometers of the descent on the west side are extremely steep in parts.

5th place: Grossglockner


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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The Grobglockner offers one of the highest pass roads with an extraordinary landscape.

Length: 48 kilometers • Height: 2504 meters • Opening times: beginning of May to end of October • Maximum gradient: 12 percent • Toll: 18 euros • Special features: moderate driving pleasure, but an unbeatable panorama around Austria’s highest mountain.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Grobglockner.

This is the top. The 18 euro toll for motorcyclists is a record. But there is plenty to see around Austria’s highest mountain from 6 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. Even if the tourism authority advertises with 38 hairpin bends, the high alpine road is more for landscape lovers. As one of the main traffic arteries from south to north, the lower part is partly built with three lanes on both sides. Where it gets narrower and more winding, there are usually crawling mobile homes in the way. To see the 3798 meter high Grobglockner and the rest of its glacier, a detour to Kaiser-Franz-Josefs-Hohe is a must. The same applies to the ascent from the desolate top of the pass to the Edelweibspitze, where you can enjoy the view from Strudel and Almdudler.

6th place: Solkpass


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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The Solkpass is quite low, but has a few other attractions. Various curves and beautiful views sweeten the ride.

Length: 32 kilometers • Altitude: 1788 meters • Opening times: May to the end of October • Maximum gradient: 15 percent • No tolls • Special features: at the north end, nice detour to the Stoderzinken.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Solkpass.

From the Ennstal to the upper Murtal, the route initially climbs quickly parallel to an old Roman road. On the descent, you first have to ride quite a mogul slope, then a forest with various curves follows. Our tip: Before starting south, take a 1,800-meter-high detour to the Stoderzinken with 14 hairpin bends, a great view of the Ennstal and a cozy hut for refreshment.

7th place: Plockenpass


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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The Plockenpass is particularly spectacular on the steep Italian side.

Length: 30 kilometers • Height: 1357 meters • Opening times: all year round • Maximum gradient: 13 percent • No tolls • Special features: three completely different route characters.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Plockenpass.

The narrow road nestles tightly against the mountain flank, turn by turn it goes through the Val Grande uphill to the border. The top of the pass offers refreshment options, but the view of rotting border buildings is not very inviting. On the Austrian side, the piste is initially better developed, but in the meantime leads to a fun uphill section with numerous bumps and knolls before the last four kilometers run out smoothly in the valley.

8th place: Silvretta


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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The landscape of the Silvretta-Strabe is a hit, but a rigid speed limit and the expensive toll tarnish the fun.

Length: 22 kilometers • Height: 2030 meters • Opening times: beginning of May to end of October • Maximum gradient: 14 percent • Toll: 10.50 euros • Special features: the journey from both sides is tiring.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Silvretta-Strabe.

The three-thousand-meter peaks Piz Buin, Fluchthorn and the Kuchenspitze offer an impressive sight, besides the hefty toll it is clouded by the mighty water pipe that disguises the Bieler Hohe to generate electricity. The ascent through a rugged high valley is reminiscent of Scotland, behind the pass the road plunges in a dozen hairpin bends into the high forest. Unfortunately, there is a constant tempo of 60 for bikers.

9th place: Nassfeld Pass


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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The landscape and route of the Nassfeld Pass are attractive, but the poor asphalt often draws your gaze downwards.

Length: 25 kilometers • Height: 1530 meters • Opening times: March to early November • Maximum gradient: 14 percent • No tolls • Special features: completely different on both sides.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Nassfeld Pass.

The driveway from Obergailtal is sometimes steep, but the road is well developed and nicely flowing. Behind the pass, a rougher pace is announced. The road surface with bumps, cracks and nicks demands full attention. In numerous tight bends (one of them even in a tunnel) the narrow piste runs through the valley like a canal carved into the mountains with an ax.

Place 10: Zillertaler Hohenstrabe


On the go: the best passes in Austria


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A case for cruisers: the Zillertaler Hohenstrabe offers fantastic views of the Zillertal and the surrounding mountains.

Length: 48 kilometers • Height: 2040 meters • Opening times: June to October • Maximum gradient: 20 percent • Toll: 4 euros • Special features: no actual pass, but rather a panoramic road.


On the go: the best passes in Austria


Drawing: Hornig

The route over the Zillertaler Hohenstrabe.

It is not a real pass road, but the high path along the Zillertal deserves a place in the top ten. Created to connect the alpine pastures and to secure the mountains, it winds its way up inexorably on several driveways up to over 2000 meters, where there is a fantastic view of the Zillertal Alps. The slope is too narrow for a higher speed and too dirty because of the agriculture. Our tip: the most beautiful from north to south. The toll booth is unoccupied from late afternoon.

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